painting by Ernst Prophète (Haitian/Cap-Haitien, b. 1950)
Dutty Boukman, [aka. Zamba Boukman], (Haiti, d. 1791)
INDEPENDENCE EVENT & RITUAL
1. Grab a pig
2. Congregate the people & start a fire
3. Promise to Ezili Dantor –the spirit of vengeance and rage – that all of you will rise up & defeat the invader.
4. See the mambo priestess be possessed by the aforementioned spirit.
5. Say the following:
the god who created
the giving-light sun the one who rouses
the ocean & rules the thunder our God
he who has ears to hear you
hidden in a cloud
you see all
all the white man has made
the white man's god inspires him with crime
the god within us our god the just
commands us to avenge our wrongs
he will direct our arms to victory
let’s cast away the pitiless image
of the white men's god
listen to the voice for liberty that speaks within us
5. Slay the pig.
6. Seal the pact by drinking a cup of its blood.
Reworked by Javier Taboada.
source. The Caribbean Oral Tradition: Literature, Performance, and Practice, ed. by Hanétha Vété-Congolo, Palgrave, Macmillan, 2016, p. 167 & ss.
Bois-Caïman (lit. “Alligator Forest”) in northern Haiti was the site for the political, religious & strategic assembly that on the night of August 14th, 1791, sparked the revolution against the French colonizers. It is said that Dutty Boukman, a voodoo houngan – shaman or high priest -- led a sacrificial pig slain along with Cécile Fatiman (a mambo priestess), a ritual now considered as the official start of the Haitian Independence movement. Many Haitians believe that it assured their success & up to date Bois-Caïman is regarded as a holy place.
Javier Taboada (Mexico, b. 1982)
THIS IS A SPECTROGRAM
the voice of a pig
in its last 20 secs. of life)
The pig is tied by the neck 1)
Pig head at maximum tension: vocal peak 3)
The pig halts or becomes exhausted 2), 5), 7), 10)
Pig kicks/ pulls/ tries to free itself 4), 6), 8), 11)
A swineherd’s mallet falls on the floor 9)
The pig receives three blows to the head A, B, C
Bloodletting begins 12)
or pace Gombrowicz.: OBJECTIVISM
arising directly from anesthesia
this is no longer
—no no no—
the voice of a tortured pig
transforms it as
Art should be)